Lockheed buys Aveos MRO business

Subsidiary of U.S. defence giant to hire 100 with purchase.

Comments Off January 9, 2013
by Canadian Press

MONTREAL — A Canadian subsidiary of U.S. defence giant Lockheed Martin Corp. expects to hire up to 100 former Aveos Fleet Performance employees after purchasing a number of the Montreal-areas assets of the insolvent company.

The first of the employees are expected to be on the job when Lockheed Martin Canada reopens the shuttered engine maintenance, repair and overhaul operation in April. The rest of the hiring is expected to be completed by the end of the year.

Lockheed Martin Canada purchased tools and equipment at auction for two lines of aircraft engines, along with the Aveos building near Trudeau International Airport. The CF34 and CFM56 engines will join the eight other engines that are repaired by business unit Kelly Aviation Center based in San Antonio, Tex.

“We’re very excited about the venture, we’re looking forward to working with the Canadian expertise and bringing our experience to bear,” Kelly Aviation vice-president Amy Gowder said in a telephone interview.

The sale of the business still requires approval from the Quebec Superior Court, but the monitor for Aveos is recommending approval. Gowder said Lockheed only learned of the opportunity in September but is eager to begin hiring managers to plan for the phased start to the business.

Lockheed said it will use the acquired assets to work on CF34 and CFM56 engines that power Embraer and Bombardier regional jets, along with the Airbus A320 family of planes.

The new facility will be named the Kelly Aviation Center Montreal and be affiliated with the aviation centre based at the former Kelly Air Force Base in San Antonio, Tex. A Kelly spokeswoman, Cheryl Kahn, said the company didn’t receive any government financial support to stay in Montreal.

“We wanted to stay in Montreal, if at all possible, and with the co-operation of the officials there, Transport Canada and the union, they all made it possible for us to be able to do it,” Kahn said.

Lockheed Martin Canada has more than 700 employees at facilities in Ottawa, Montreal, Dartmouth and Calgary, as well as Department of National Defence sites across the country.

This transaction is the latest effort by Aveos’ creditors to sell off the failed aircraft business, which closed last March, terminating about 2,600 jobs across the country, including some 1,800 in Montreal.
© 2013 The Canadian Press